CALENDAR

At the Museum and More…

Capital Mineral Club Show
August 29-30, 2015
15 Loudon Road, Everett Arena
Concord, New Hampshire

48th Annual Denver
Gem and Mineral Show

September 18-20, 2015
Denver Mart Expo Hall
Denver, Colorado

Freyburg Fair
October 4-11, 2015
Natural Resource Center with Saco Valley Mineral Club

2016 Tucson Gem & Mineral Show
February 11-14, 2016
Tucson Convention Center
Tucson, Arizona

Rocks & Minerals,
Jan/Feb 2016 Issue

Aquamarine from Stoneham and Vicinity, Oxford County, Maine by Carl A. Francis, Myles Felch, Alexander U. Falster and Douglas Bailey

MMGM News

Director | Curator | Store
Events | Science | Spotlight on Sponsorship

Directives – Giving Back is Giving Forward

By Barbra Barrett, MMGM Director

Barbra Barrett twoThis past week MMGM proudly hosted a group of 19 young women from Grab The Torch’s Summer Institute Program for a behind-the-scenes tour of the museum. GTT is an educational experience of leadership, ethics, empathy and philanthropy. The message of their program is, “Give to give, not to get. Your lives will be enhanced by unconditional giving.” The students were from Colorado, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Maine.

One might ask how GTT relates to MMGM. It’s really quite simple. Without the vision and generosity of our founders, Lawrence Stifler and Mary McFadden, this museum would not be built. Mary and Larry embody the spirit of community and so selflessly give for the greater good.

Grab the Torch Students & Staff Members  gather in front of MMGM with Museum  Founders and Director

Grab the Torch Students & Staff Members
gather in front of MMGM with Museum
Founders and Director

The benefits to MMGM and its related communities through Mary and Larry will benefit generations to come. MMGM is an educational resource for the people of Maine and around the globe. Like a seed, the dream of MMGM would not have grown without the nourishment provided from their leadership and philanthropic desire to give back. We are all so very fortunate.

A student from the KIPP Academy in New York City said, “I’ve never had adults speak to me like Mary and Larry did. It’s not all about money; it’s about passion. I now know the true meaning of philanthropy.” Grab the Torch students learn that leadership is a process of social influence which maximizes the efforts of others towards the achievement of a goal and shared purpose.

Mary McFadden and Larry Stifler, MMGM Founders

Mary McFadden and Larry Stifler, MMGM Founders

Building a museum is indeed a shared purpose. As a non-profit, we rely on support from our community. I invite each of you to share in our vision by spreading the word and becoming a member of MMGM. Last fall, we launched a charter membership campaign and welcomed our first-ever members. It’s not too late for you to become a Charter Member now through October 31st. Mary McFadden and Larry Stifler grabbed the torch and we ask that you help carry it for years to come.

For more information on Grab the Torch please visit their website at www.grabthetorch.org


Collections – Rocks are Familiar to Everyone

By Carl Francis, PhD

Carl Francis, MMGM Curator

MMGM Trustee Arthur Hussey  with Mt. Ararat Gneiss, the  folding of rock layers

MMGM Trustee Arthur Hussey
with Mt. Ararat Gneiss, the
folding of rock layers

In speaking to the Greater Lovell Land Trust on August 11th, I introduced the words mineral and rock with the following analogies. Just as words are made of letters, minerals are made of chemical elements; just as sentences are made of words, rocks are made of minerals. Rocks are familiar to everyone. They are the context in which we encounter minerals, so they are a logical part of the museum’s exhibits, programs and collections despite not being mentioned in MMGM’s name.

Staff geologist Myles Felch, a Maine native and U. Maine Farmington graduate, joined the museum team last December after completing a master’s degree in pegmatite studies at the University of New Orleans with Professor Simmons—who is recently retired from that post and is now MMGM’s Director of Research.

MMGM Director, Barbra Barrett, and Myles Felch, Staff Geologist, with  Hallowell granite monolith

MMGM Director, Barbra Barrett, and Myles Felch, Staff Geologist, with
Hallowell granite monolith

Myles has taken the lead in collecting meter-size specimens of commercially important or scientifically interesting Maine rocks that are being installed in front of the museum.

Upright monoliths of Hallowell granite at the corner of Main and Chapman streets are a new Bethel landmark. Large blocks of marble from Dragon Products Company’s Thomaston quarry and slate from Monson lie on either side of the front door. There are numerous specimens from local pegmatite quarries. The glacial boulder from Otisfield is visually intriguing and begs explanation.

The ‘rock garden’ that Myles is developing is a coherent exhibit on Maine geology that will be available 24/7. MMGM visitors will begin their museum experience even before they enter the building!

 


Events – Dr. Carl Francis Talks to GLLT,

Leads Lord Hill Quarry Hike

By Amy Halsted, MMGM Communications

Amy-Halsted-1

Determination is the name of  the game at the Lord Hill quarry.  Photo credit Leigh Macmillen Hayes

Determination is the name of
the game at the Lord Hill quarry.
Photo credit Leigh Macmillen Hayes

On Tuesday, August 11th, MMGM’s curator, Dr. Carl Francis spoke to a record audience of 57, including families with young children, at the Greater Lovell Land Trust (GLLT); the following day, he lead a hike for 40 up Lord Hill in Stoneham to see the feldspar quarry on the summit.

His topic “Minerals of Lovell-Stoneham-Stow Pegmatites” captured the imaginations of all. Held at the Charlotte Hobbs Memorial Library and featuring an

Dr. Carl Francis shares the story of the  Lord Hill Quarry on the GLLT hike.  Photo credit Leigh Macmillen Hayes

Dr. Carl Francis shares the story of the
Lord Hill Quarry on the GLLT hike.
Photo credit Leigh Macmillen Hayes

American Sign Language Interpreter, Carl illustrated how the granitic pegmatites in the towns of Lovell, Stoneham and Stow have yielded minerals of aesthetic, scientific and commercial interest since the late nineteenth century.

Carl highlighted the history and finds of the pegmatites in the Lovell area with contrast to the pegmatites of Auburn, Newry and Paris. Gem varieties, including aquamarine and amethyst, are prominent among the dozens of minerals found in this region.

Those interested in GLLT activities may contact them directly and visit its website www.gllt.org
• By Phone: 207-925-1056
GLLTlogo2c_inclphone• Email office at: info@gllt.org
• Tom Henderson, Executive Director tom@gllt.org
• Rob Upton, President, rupton@uptonhatfield.com
• Leigh Macmillen Hayes, Education Director, lmachayes@gmail.com

First time rock hounder, Ellie, gets into the task on the GLLT’s hike. Photo credit Leigh Macmillen Hayes

First time rock hounder, Ellie, gets into the task on the GLLT’s hike.
Photo credit Leigh Macmillen Hayes

The Greater Lovell Land Trust (GLLT) is a 501(c) (3) non-profit land conservation organization established in 1985. The mission of the Greater Lovell Land Trust is to protect the ecosystems of the Kezar Lake, Kezar River, and Cold River watersheds, in perpetuity, for the benefit of this region’s natural and human communities.


Treasures – MMGM’s Preview Gallery

by Maggie Kroenke

Maggie

For a sneak peek at Maine Mineral & Gem Museum’s developing exhibits, stop by the Preview Gallery section of the Museum Store to whet your geological appetite.

Drills bits for dynamite holes

Drills bits for dynamite holes

Specimens, artifacts, and pictures of several of the MMGM’s collections help show the future and encompassing nature of the collections and exhibitions.

The Lapidary and Hall of Gems previews show a variety of tools used to turn Maine’s minerals into gems and includes beautiful examples of finished

IMG_0953 (3)b

Elbaite in Lepidolite, Dunton Mine, Newry, Maine

gemstones. Gems are also on display and highlighted in the Museum Store.

MMGM’s Preview Gallery and Museum Store show off the abundance of Maine’s minerals and gemstones and Maine artists as well.

history

Loren Merrill sitting in front of a large pocket at Mt. Mica

Store Hours: Monday through Saturday 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. www.mainemineralgemmuseum.org


Science – Rare Earth Elements

Studied by New Orleans Students

By Al Falster, M.S. and Skip Simmons, Jr. Ph.D.

Al Falster and Skip Simmons

SCIENCE

Al Falster and students Alexis Lang and Joshua Hartley. Cathy Boucvalt, photo

Alexis Lang and Joshua Hartley, from John Curtis High School in New Orleans, Louisiana, finished their project on rare earth elements in local rocks and are back in New Orleans after a week of intense work in the lab.

Their project involved the abundance of rare earth elements (REE) in pegmatite wall zones and surrounding country rock. They investigated samples from the Topsham area, the Songo pluton and the Oxford County pegmatite field in the Sebago migmatite terrain.

Pocket Pollucite, Mount Mica

Pocket Pollucite, Mount Mica

We have submitted an abstract on the composition of the gemmy pocket pollucite found in the Mount Mica pegmatite to the GSA meeting in Baltimore this fall. It is coauthored by Simmons, Falster, Felch and Francis. Pocket pollucite is much less common in Oxford County pegmatites than pollucite pods in massive pegmatite.

Al Falster will be guest editor for the special issue of the Canadian Mineralogist that is dedicated to papers presented at the Peg2015 conference in Poland this year.

 


Support – Last Chance to Join as a Charter Member

By Bill Stockwell, MMGM Capital Director

Bill Stockwell-crop

MMGM Board Member, Bob Ritchie with  Aldro French, Advisory Committee & Charter Member

MMGM Board Member, Bob Ritchie with
Aldro French, Advisory Committee & Charter Member

MMGM Charter Membership is offered only to those who become members in our first year of operation. We are grateful to all our Charter members to date! Find a complete listing on our website.

As is said, time flies. In only two short months, our first full year defining, designing, collecting and building MMGM will be at hand.

If you’ve not joined MMGM yet, do it today to be counted among the original group to support our mission. The deadline for your Charter Membership is October 31st, 2015. Charter Members will always be special to us as the first group to support the startup of the museum.

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Charter Member, Debbie Whitney, enjoying the Preview Gallery

By way of background, MMGM membership expires on the one-year anniversary of joining. We will send renewal notices to remind you to renew before your membership expires.

MMGM exhibition schematic

MMGM exhibition schematic

Membership is any nonprofit organization’s “bread and butter.” It is unrestricted income to MMGM and pays staff and expenses enabling us to continue our incredible work and to have the lights on so you can visit.

Contact us for a membership form or join online at www.mainemineralgemmuseum.org. Do it now before it’s too late to be a Charter Member.